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Transcript of Secretary Penny Pritzker delivers strategic vision for the Department of Commerce

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In my first few months as Secretary, I met with hundreds of CEOs and business leaders across the country. Overall, I am hearing that we are Open for Business.

Looking forward, the Commerce Department will focus on three key ways to set the conditions for even more growth and job creation.

FIRST, American businesses need access to more markets and more customers. The Department will enhance the President’s National Export Initiative, reaching out to include more communities, small businesses, and sectors to help them export. In addition, we will focus on completing major new free trade agreements in the Asia-Pacific and Europe.

At the same time, we will work to attract more inbound investment, building on the success of our SelectUSA program. We want CEOs around the world to understand that there has never been a better time to invest in the United States.

Our SECOND focus is innovation, because American businesses need cutting-edge technologies, a strong digital economy, and workers with the right skills.

The Department will support the National Network for Manufacturing Innovation, an industry-led proposal that already has bipartisan support in Congress.

Also, we will make sure that our businesses have a voice in discussions about how to grow and protect our digital economy.


And, for the first time, the Commerce Department, our federal partners, and industry leaders will team up to support demand-driven skills training.

THIRD, we will focus on providing more and better data to help businesses make the best growth decisions. With the help of the private sector itself, we can unleash valuable data from the Commerce Department and other agencies.

Importantly, this data helps both existing businesses as well as new data-driven startups.

FINALLY, in addition to the three areas I mentioned, we will continue to focus on longstanding Commerce priorities such as protecting our environment and helping communities adapt to a changing planet.

As a former business leader for  years, my personal commitment is that the Commerce Department will be responsive and outcomes-driven. America’s entrepreneurs and businesses – our most important customers – deserve nothing less.

All of us at the Commerce Department look forward to helping set the conditions for economic growth and job creation. Working closely with industry, we can ensure that American companies will become even more innovative at home and more competitive abroad.

Let’s show the world that America is Open for Business. And let’s start right now.

Thank you.